Anwar says he and Azmin need to work on same team

Malaysia's prime minister-in-waiting Anwar Ibrahim (left) said he was not involved in circulating the video clips, and had called on Azmin Ali, who is also Economic Affairs Minister, to resign if it was proven that he was one of the men in the video
Malaysia's prime minister-in-waiting Anwar Ibrahim (left) said he was not involved in circulating the video clips, and had called on Azmin Ali, who is also Economic Affairs Minister, to resign if it was proven that he was one of the men in the video clips.PHOTOS: ST FILE, REUTERS

Malaysia's PM-in-waiting also accepts that his party deputy was not involved in sex video scandal

PETALING JAYA • Malaysia's prime minister-in-waiting Anwar Ibrahim yesterday said he was prepared to work with his Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) deputy Azmin Ali, after their recent spat over a sex video scandal.

Datuk Seri Anwar was speaking to reporters at the close of PKR's three-day retreat in Port Dickson, at which he received overwhelming support as PKR president from party members.

"Azmin is the deputy president. We need to work as a team (and hold) regular meetings and discussions," Mr Anwar said. "There is no problem, it is still a team."

PKR has seen bitter infighting between rival camps led by Mr Anwar and Datuk Seri Azmin, after video clips depicting two men engaging in sex acts surfaced on social media last month.

Mr Azmin, who did not attend the party retreat, had initially been implicated as one of the men in the video. He has denied being in the video and dismissed it as a plot from within the party to destroy his political career.

Mr Anwar said he was not involved in circulating the video clips, and had called on Mr Azmin, who is also Economic Affairs Minister, to resign if it was proven that he was one of the men in the video clips.

Last Saturday, Mr Anwar said he accepted that Mr Azmin was not involved in the scandal, based on a statement released by the Malaysian police.

"We are glad with the assertion that Azmin is not involved based on the facial recognition process, which has turned out to be negative as they can't establish the characters in the sex clip," Mr Anwar said, referring to the police probe.

Mr Anwar also said the police should be allowed to complete their investigation, adding that the PKR strictly rejects gutter politics.

 
 
 

Mr Azmin wrote on Twitter late Saturday that he had taken note of Mr Anwar's comments.

"After looking at Anwar's full statement, I acknowledge his stand that he has accepted the findings of the investigation announced by the IGP (Inspector-General of Police) that cleared me of any involvement in the defamatory video," Mr Azmin tweeted.

The country's police chief Abdul Hamid Bador had said last Thursday that CyberSecurity Malaysia, the agency tasked with forensic analysis of the video, could not identify the people in the video through facial recognition. But it found that there was a high probability the video was authentic.

Datuk Seri Abdul Hamid added that the police investigation was continuing.

Last month, former PKR youth leader Haziq Aziz confessed to being one of the two men in the sex video and alleged that the other man was Mr Azmin.

Mr Haziq, as well as Mr Anwar's political secretary Farhash Mubarak, are among 11 people who have been arrested and remanded by police so far over the video clips.

Mr Anwar had said last Saturday that PKR would not hesitate to take action "according to the party Constitution if any members are involved and convicted by law".

Mr Azmin in his Saturday tweet had also noted that stern action would be taken against any PKR leaders or members involved in spreading the video.

THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 22, 2019, with the headline 'Anwar says he and Azmin need to work on same team'. Print Edition | Subscribe